Wherever we went in England and Scotland this past week, we saw store front windows celebrating the Diamond Jubilee, and announcements everywhere of festivities and local events in honor of the event. There is a great sense of celebration everywhere, from the smallest village to London’s high street. You really can feel it building, and the sense of national pride and just plain fun is in every corner of the country. This weekend should be a kick!
I have thought more than once what a great sense of community the monarchy brings, and whenever I hear people wonder why the British keep it, this makes it perfectly obvious. At the moment it is at the height of popularity and seems to pull the entire country together.
The deep awareness of history and common past has never shown its strength in a more obvious way. Most Brits have never known a different monarch in their lifetime when you consider this celebrates Elizabeth’s 60th year. So though we Americans may go through many heads of state in our lifetime, the monarchy gives the British people a great sense of continuity and national pride.
There are all sorts of street parties and local celebrations planned, from pony rides to special fairs, and just about everyone seems to be getting in to the spirit. Of course a four day holiday weekend does help bring joy to the nation.
It’s been great fun to be around for it, and I head in to London on today to join in the main festivities.